The Kubert School

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The Kubert School.
The Kubert School
Type Proprietary, For-Profit
Established 1976
President Joe Kubert
Academic staff
10–15 per school year
Undergraduates 150
Location Dover, New Jersey
Campus Urban
Mascot Tor

The Kubert School, formerly the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art or Joe Kubert School, located in Dover, New Jersey, is a three-year technical school that teaches the principles of sequential art and the particular craft of the comics industry as well as commercial illustration. The Kubert School was and still is the only accredited school devoted entirely to cartooning.

The school's instructors are full-time professionals working in the industry, many of them graduates of the school themselves, and the instruction is hands-on and practical. The school has a reputation for demanding and intensive coursework. Its alumni include Amanda Conner, Lee Weeks, and Alex Maleev, as well as many other successful and well-known comics pencilers and inkers.


The Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art was founded in September 1976 by cartoonist Joe Kubert and his wife Muriel in Dover's former high school, whose tall windows offered optimal lighting.[1] Its first graduating class of 1978 included Stephen R. Bissette,[2] Thomas Yeates, and Rick Veitch.

Founder and teacher Kubert kept his own studio in the school, later joined by his sons Adam and Andy, who are also comic book professionals and who teach at the school.

Campus and student body[edit]

Anthony Marques and Adam Kubert at a Kubert School presentation at the 2012 New York Comic Con.

The three official student houses are the Carriage House and Mansion, at the former site of the school on Lehigh Street, in Dover, and the Clinton House on W. Clinton Street. The school houses the Kubert Art Store, which sells art supplies needed for assignments, such as books and drafting tables.

There are usually no more than 150 students attending the school at any time. As well as regular weekday classes, the school also holds a weekly class every Saturday, which are available for people who are not enrolled in the main program. The class is on basic lessons in cartooning, and is taught by Fernando Ruiz and Fabio Redivo.

The school has students from as far away as Japan and Malaysia, in addition to students from the local area. Kubert expressed the school's philosophy in a 2003 profile:


[3] All classes at The Kubert School are mandatory. There are ten classes a week, two classes a day. Each class is two hours and forty-five minutes.

First Year

  • "Introduction to Animation" teaches the fundamentals of traditional hand-drawn animation. Students learn to produce simple animations, including a walk cycle. Taught by Doug Compton.
  • Production I" teaches basic Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, color theory and computer lettering.
  • "Humor & Caricature I" teaches how to caricature humans, as well as production of humorous comic strips. Taught by Rod Ollerenshaw and John Hazard.
  • "Design I" teaches fundamentals of design. Assignments typically include solving problems relating to composition and design theory, as applied to fine art, illustration, and cartooning. Taught by Alec Stevens.
  • "Lettering" teaches comic book lettering, in both dialogue and sound effect fonts. Taught by Hy Eisman (Popeye, The Katzenjammer Kids), John Hazard, and Rod Ollerenshaw.
  • "Basic Drawing I" teaches the fundamentals of drawing, including lighting, rendering, composition, and perspective. Taught by Tom Mandrake and Jan Duursema").
  • "Layout I" teaches the fundamentals of layout in single illustrations, advertisements, film posters, etc. Taught by Bob Hardin.
  • "Figure Drawing I" is a life drawing class, typically featuring a live nude male or female model. Basics of human anatomy are also covered. Taught by Joel Tidey.
  • "Methods and Materials I" teaches use of various tools used for comic production, including inking with brushes and crow quill pens, Duoshade, scratchboard, Dr. Ph. Martin dyes, and more. Taught by Mike Chen and Kim DeMulder.
  • "Narrative Art I" teaches the production of finished sequential art, from thumbnail to rough layout, to penciled pages, and sometimes finished inked and/or lettered pages. Actual sequential pages usually make up about 10% of the assignments for this class. Taught by Fernando Ruiz.

Second Year

  • "Narrative Art II" continues the lesson on sequential art. Actual sequential pages usually make up about 50% of the assignments for this class. Taught by Andy Kubert ("X-Men," "Batman").
  • "Basic Drawing II" teaches intermediate drawing skills, and expands upon the foundations taught in First Year. Taught by Kim DeMulder.
  • "Layout and Design I" teaches computer production, including computer lettering (Adobe Illustrator), computer coloring (Adobe Photoshop), and page production (QuarkXPress). Taught by Giovani Valletta.
  • "Humor & Caricature II" continues caricature lessons and production of humorous comic strips. Taught by John Hazard.
  • "Human Figure II" is a second year life drawing class. In depth study of human anatomy (bones and muscles, and superficial appearances, utilizing a live model). Alec Stevens, instructor.
  • "Advertising Illustration" teaches production of advertising material, such as posters, CD covers, and T-shirts. Taught by Brian Buniak.
  • "Color Illustration I" teaches color theory and how to produce paintings in such media as acrylic paint and watercolor. Taught by Marco Cutrone.
  • "Methods and Materials II" teaches painting methods such as acrylic paint, watercolor, and airbrush. Taught by Todd Doney.
  • "Story Adaptation" teaches how to take a story from a medium such as novels or poems, and adapt them to comic book format. This class is generally referred to as the "second narrative class" of JKS Year Two. Taught by Michael Kraiger.
  • "Business of Cartoon Art I" teaches how to market oneself as an artist, and how to look for and secure jobs. Taught by Darren Auck, former Marvel Comics editor.

Third Year

  • "Humor & Caricature III" continues caricature lessons and production of humorous comic strips. Taught by Brian Buniak.
  • "Advanced Techniques and the Development of Style" teaches advanced techniques in art, including composition, layout, design, and rendering. Taught by Jan Duursema.
  • "Human Figure II" is another life drawing class, and teaches advanced human anatomy. Recently taught by Kim DeMulder.
  • "Sequential Art" is the third Narrative Art class, and actual sequential pages make up roughly 90% of the assignments. Taught by Adam Kubert.
  • "Layout and Design II" has a focus on website building, and learning Macromedia Dreamweaver and Macromedia Flash. Taught by Giovani Valletta.
  • "Sketching and Layout" typically contains all manner of commercial art assignments, including sequential art, posters, logo design, and more. Finished artwork is usually not necessary for a grade. Taught by Mike Chen.
  • "Business of Art II" continues the lesson on marketing oneself as an artist. Taught by Darren Auck.
  • "Writing" teaches how to write scripts for comics, and how to develop characters and plots. Taught by Michael Kraiger.
  • "Color Illustration II" continues the lesson on color theory and painting. Oil painting is typically introduced this year. Marco Cutrone.
  • "Methods and Materials III" continues the lesson on painting. Oil painting is also covered in this class. Taught by Joel Tidey.

Notable alumni[edit]



  1. ^ a b Jennings, Dana. "Paper, Pencil And a Dream," New York Times (Dec. 14, 2003).
  2. ^ Dahlen, Chris (July 23, 2009). "Interview: Steve Bissette". The A.V. Club. Retrieved April 10, 2010.
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^ Adam Kubert. The Kubert School: Faculty. Retrieved November 13, 2011.
  5. ^ Andy Kubert. The Kubert School: Faculty. Retrieved November 13, 2011.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°53′14″N 74°33′09″W / 40.8873°N 74.5526°W / 40.8873; -74.5526